1. Then Job answered:
2. “I have heard many things like these.You are all painful comforters!
3. Will your long-winded speeches never end?What makes you keep on arguing?
4. I also could speak as you doif you were in my place.I could make great speeches against youand shake my head at you.
5. But, instead, I would encourage you,and my words would bring you relief.
6. “Even if I speak, my pain is not less,and if I don’t speak, it still does not go away.
7. God, you have surely taken away my strengthand destroyed my whole family.
8. You have made me thin and weak,and this shows I have done wrong.
9. God attacks me and tears me with anger;he grinds his teeth at me;my enemy stares at me with his angry eyes.
10. People open their mouths to make fun of meand hit my cheeks to insult me.They join together against me.
11. God has turned me over to evil peopleand has handed me over to the wicked.
12. Everything was fine with me,but God broke me into pieces;he held me by the neck and crushed me.He has made me his target;
13. his archers surround me.He stabs my kidneys without mercy;he spills my blood on the ground.
14. Again and again God attacks me;he runs at me like a soldier.
15. “I have sewed rough cloth over my skin to show my sadnessand have buried my face in the dust.
16. My face is red from crying;I have dark circles around my eyes.
17. Yet my hands have never done anything cruel,and my prayer is pure.
18. “Earth, please do not cover up my blood.Don’t let my cry ever stop being heard!
19. Even now I have one who speaks for me in heaven;the one who is on my side is high above.
20. The one who speaks for me is my friend.My eyes pour out tears to God.
21. He begs God on behalf of a humanas a person begs for his friend.
22. “Only a few years will passbefore I go on the journey of no return.